Those feelings of being homesick and missing my family (and my dog) happened again the second year that I went to camp, but I was ready for them and knew how to handle them and that it was going to be okay. Here is some advice for people who are going to overnight camp for the first (second or third) time.
Camping means forgoing the basic needs of civilized living. Why do it? Do we have to suffer to be truly be at one with nature? I say no! Glamping has come to the rescue of all you who have lied to your girlfriend, or boyfriend, and pretended camping is one of your favourite things just cause they lied to you and said camping was one of their favourite things.
Whether you're heading out on a multi-day canoe trip deep into the wilderness, or planning a day hike, having basic knowledge of wilderness safety, first aid and essential gear can be the difference between life and death should you get lost or injured. Here's a list of essential skills and tools needed for your next wilderness adventure.
Freeze water in water bottles to keep food cool over the first couple of days and for drinking towards the end of your trip. Substitute your tent pegs for solar lights to shed some light on your campsite and this prevents you from tripping over guide ropes. Need fire lighters? Doritos chips or crayons will burn for a couple of minutes and will act as great fire lighters.
Though I'm not much of a camper, when asked by my friend to join him on what he claimed was a relaxing camp trip, I reluctantly agreed to spend two days and one night with three friends. Fall camping is out-of-this-world beautiful, but it's also really hard for someone who's not used to camping. Thus began my unique Fall camping experience at Kawartha Highlands Provincial Park!
Every July, around 10 Canadian universities scattered across the country play host to 500 students from all provinces/territories and even internationally. Although the program is for open-minded high school students who are not afraid to delve into any subject and become challenged or inspired in ways they never thought possible in one month, I hope to break the stereotype that this is "nerd camp". My program consisted of 56 total Shads and we lived in residence at the university.
Even if you're only going out for an hour or two, packing a snack for your hike is always a great idea. Whether you get lost, take some breaks, or just take longer than you thought, you'll need food to keep you active and alert. But not every type of food is fit to be packed. Consider the following before heading out on your next hike.
Some days, don't you get weary of being yourself? Wouldn't you love to assume another identity, at least for a breather? Recently, I changed my "outdoor" name to Hal. Until now, no one in my family has seen the "Hal" in me. The everyday me is a writer, a cyber space inhabitant, and, under recently, a pencil pusher from the city.
A dear stay-at-home mama friend of mine recently reflected on the idea of being "present," which got me thinking: am I present and in the moment with our children? And if so, is that really necessary? To be present in every moment? In order to find out, I challenged myself to be present all day, as a sort of experiment. I was present when I ruined my favourite shirt, when the kids were crying, when water spilled all over the kitchen. P.R.E.S.E.N.T.
Today, I follow my heart. I let things 'hang out' today. I never put a stitch of make-up on to cover up my imperfections. I spent the entire day in my two-piece bathing suit. I talked to strangers at the dog park. I wanted to leave and carry on with my plans for the afternoon, we did have company coming for supper, but instead, I allowed myself the moments necessary to meet someone new. To let go of my plans, and embrace the freedom to be 'in the moment'. These for me are moments of freedom.